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Our 10 Best Cupcakes in NYC

Billy's Daisy is a flower of a cupcake.
Billy's Daisy is a flower of a cupcake.
Lauren Shockey

You gotta feel sorry for the little cupcake. Overhyped by Sex and the City, then derided by food writers, they've become turds of the dessert world. True, cupcake conglomerates like Crumbs and even Magnolia Bakery aren't doing a lot for the single-serving confection (and everyone knows Magnolia is all about banana pudding, anyway). But that's not to say that you can't still find a good cupcake in this town. In fact, you can find 10 totally delicious frosting-topped desserts. Want to know where? Check out Our 10 Best Cupcakes in NYC.

10. Yellow Daisy from Billy's Bakery: Billy's, a mini-chain with branches in Chelsea, Tribeca, and Nolita, is home to one of our favorite vanilla-on-vanilla cupcakes. Its pale-yellow-colored frosting is sweet, for sure, but amply proportioned with the amount of cake. It leaves a creamy, buttery, vanilla feeling in your mouth, while the cake itself has a lovely crumb. 268 Elizabeth Street, 212-219-9956

9. Fleur de Sel from Sweet Revenge: The cupcakes at Sweet Revenge can be a little hit or miss. Sometimes the cake is too dry or there's way too much frosting. But when they get it right, it's really right. The Fleur de Sel flavor combines Argentine caramel cake with a caramel buttercream frosting for a dulce de leche-like dessert that's, yep, delish. 62 Carmine Street, 212-242-2240

8. Pistachio from Sugar Sweet Sunshine: Sugar Sweet Sunshine keeps the Lower East Side buzzy with its range of cupcakes, though we're partial to the pistachio version. While not overly nutty, it has a mild pistachio flavor and icing that's not too sweet. Occasionally they can be a tad dry, but it's still a lovely, unusual offering in the cupcake world. 126 Rivington Street, 212-995-1960

 

Spot Dessert Bar's cupcake is topped with shredded coconut.
Spot Dessert Bar's cupcake is topped with shredded coconut.
Lauren Shockey

7. Tahitian Coconut from Spot Dessert Bar: It's surprisingly hard to find a good coconut cupcake in this town, which is a crying shame. The best we've ever found, though, is at Spot Dessert Bar. A moist round of cake is topped with cream-cheesy coconut icing and sprinkled with toasted coconut on top for good measure. 13 St. Marks Place, 212-677-5670

Amy's Bread offers some of the cutest cupcakes around.
Amy's Bread offers some of the cutest cupcakes around.
Lauren Shockey

6. Yellow With Mocha Frosting from Amy's Bread: One of the prettiest cupcakes on the block, that's for sure. This sprinkle-topped yellow-cake cupcake has a lovely -- and most importantly -- light and not-too-sugary mocha-flavored icing. When you want a little vanilla and a little chocolate, and not too much of each. 250 Bleecker Street, 212-675-7802

5. Vanilla from Baked: This Red Hook bakery puts out a good selection of classic bakery treats, and our favorite here is the vanilla, plain and simple. Unlike at many bakeries around the city, the vanilla flavor doesn't taste artificial, but actually like vanilla. 359 Van Brunt Street, 718-222-0345

 

Blueberry-cheesecake cupcake
Blueberry-cheesecake cupcake
Lauren Shockey

4. Blueberry Cheesecake from Molly's Cupcakes: Chicago import Molly's Cupcakes is probably our overall favorite cupcake shop in the city, not only because of its wide range of tasty cupcakes -- it's also a lovely setting with board games and ample seating. Their cupcakes run the gamut from classic red velvet to a crème-brûlée concoction (not quite as awesome as it sounds, but not a bad bet), but our favorite offering is the blueberry-cheesecake option, topped with fresh fruit and streusel pieces. If you generally don't like cupcakes, this is one to get you back in the game. 228 Bleecker Street, 212-414-2253

Robicelli's great-tasting though slightly poorly named Car Bomb.
Robicelli's great-tasting though slightly poorly named Car Bomb.
Lauren Shockey

3. Car Bomb from Robicelli's: Brooklyn Cupcake maker (and market favorite) Robicelli's seems to change up the flavors of cupcakes they put out every five minutes. We've enjoyed all of their treats from the past, but we'll stick to our new favorite flavor since it'll (hopefully) be the easiest to find. The Car Bomb features chocolate Guinness stout cake, with Jameson whiskey ganache and Baileys Irish Cream buttercream. It's not as boozy as you'd think, but you still get all the flavors and a nice chocolate undertone. Citywide (check Robicelli's website), though purchased at the Brooklyneer, 220 West Houston Street, 646-692-4911

It's all about the caramel in Dessert Club's cupcake.
It's all about the caramel in Dessert Club's cupcake.
Lauren Shockey

2. Caramel from Dessert Club, ChikaLicious: This cupcake is pure caramel delight. A spongy caramel cake is crowned with a pretty caramel-flavored mousse topping, but the real gem of this beauty is the intense dark caramel center that oozes out when you bite into it. With just a hint of salt and plenty of that burnt-sugar flavor, it proves that being lovely on the inside is what really matters. 203 East 10th Street, 212-475-0929

 

The winning cupcake!
The winning cupcake!
Lauren Shockey

1. Brooklyn Blackout from Two Little Red Hens: Now this is what a chocolate cupcake is all about. The treat (which is also available at Ladybird Bakery in Brooklyn, a/k/a the original Two Little Red Hens) features chocolate cake with a molten chocolate-pudding center, an intensely fudgey icing, and chocolate crumb sprinkles on top. We're generally partial to vanilla cake, but this dark delight dazzled us with its rich, pure, chocolate flavor. Go get one now. 1652 Second Avenue, 212-452-0476

For more dining news, head to Fork in the Road, or follow us @ForkintheRoadVV, or me @ldshockey.


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